A new avenue of attack may be opening up for investors seeking to force big banks to buy back billions of dollars in mortgages: drag the trustees into the fight.

Last month, the Knights of Columbus sued Bank of New York Mellon Corp., the trustee for two MBS that the Catholic fraternal group invested in. The plaintiffs' real target was not named as a defendant: Bank of America Corp., whose mortgage unit, the former Countrywide Home Loans, issued the securities. The Knights are demanding that BNY Mellon account for unauthorized fees that Bank of America, the servicer of the pools, has allegedly been charging to the investor trusts.

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